clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Arkansas Razorbacks 85, LSU Tigers 65: Knockout

New, 6 comments

14-14, 7-8

Gunnar Rathbun-USA TODAY Sports

This might have been Arkansas' best performance of the season.

LSU came into Bud Walton on a wintry night reeling like a boxer just waiting to be knocked out, and the Hogs were more than happy to oblige.

The Razorbacks featured five players in double figures, including Trey Thompson, who likely played the best game of his career to this point. He was a perfect 6-6 from the field for 13 points and 6 rebounds. He showed no fear going against LSU star Ben Simmons, physically attacking him to get to the rim on a few occasions, and even deflecting and stealing a pass from Simmons. By the time he checked out of the game with the win firmly in hand, he received a well-earned ovation from the fans.

Moses Kingsley kept up with him statistically. Kingsley had yet another double-double, this time with 21 points, 12 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 blocks, and a steal. Seventeen of those points came in the second half when Arkansas pulled away after clinging to a two-point lead at halftime. Simmons finished with 23 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, one block, one steal, and five turnovers. And he fouled out just as former top draft pick Blake Griffin did when his Oklahoma Sooners lost in Bud Walton back in December 2008.

Dusty Hannahs, Anthlon Bell, and Jimmy Whitt all reached double figures again. LSU only had five players score. The Tigers had zero bench points.

Whitt was really the reason Arkansas built a lead at all in the first half. Kingsley and Bell weren't connecting but most all of Whitt's points came in those first 20 minutes to keep the Hogs in it. He hit a couple of threes and a finger-roll in traffic. Fans have to be hoping this is a good sign for his future. After struggling quite a bit in December and January, Whitt's had a few good games this month, and that's great to see.

As for this team, the win puts them back at .500 overall after many left them for dead after the home loss to Auburn last week. This proves that they're still fighting and believing. With two road games coming up before the regular season finale at home against South Carolina, it remains to be seen how far they can go with it, but they're making an effort.

The Hogs still mathematically have a shot at every seed in the SEC Tournament other than #1 and #14. Which means most teams in the league are about in the same spot. So it's pretty pointless to speculate on how they'll finish before heading to Nashville. But I'm looking forward to seeing how it plays out.